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Tie-Talk: The $9.57 Vise

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March 21, 2011

Tie-Talk: The $9.57 Vise

By Tim Romano

by Tim Romano

A couple of weeks ago I was checking out my friend, Michael Gracie's Blog and came across what must be the ultimate DIY fly-tying vise. When I say DIY I mean it. This sucker was built out of 4 parts from the local Home Depot and cost just $9.57.

Michael says, "I made a big mistake along the way, but nothing that’ll cost me more than a few bucks to rectify. I used a 3/8ths drill bit for the angled hole, but I should have used a 7/16ths instead. The hole in the table leg was just a bit too narrow, so like any impatient engineer I took a rubber mallet to the X-acto handle – in the process I split the wood AND bent the knife handle. Further, I didn’t account for the head rotation when securing the hook.

He also says, "…it works! I ran through a number of Gamakatsu SC15 #1′s without issue, and think this particular setup would probably work from 1/0 down to about #14.

To see how Gracie did it and what he used click here. If anyone can build a vise for the number of parts used or the cost I'm all ears...

Comments (18)

Top Rated
All Comments
from ckRich wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Hahahahaha BRILLIANT!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

I am impressed. Very nice.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

very cool. now move the leg down to one side and add some dowels or pegs for thread and holders for your tools. or keep the vise in the middle and put thread on one side and tools on the other side. lots of possibilities here. thanks for sharing.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

With an invention like that, I'm surprised to see not a single adult beverage in the pic with it. It's very nice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Creative dude, BUT,,the reel test of a vice if the guy is serious about tying, and it isn't just a quirk, is the quality of the steel. Poor jaws, and the temper of the steel, will result in shiny steel jaws in a short time, and the hook won't hold very well.

-4 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Brilliant is right! Ingenuity - can't wait to what he does to make it rotate.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from db270 wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

It's projects like this that smash the "snotty" fly fisherman image and get me excited to try fly tying!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

dh270 You really see it that way? Fly guys are very thought provoking anglers. I see it as fly guy creativity..nothing to do with "snotty' IMO.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Koldcut,

Yes, tying and drinking are closly related. Normally it's a few beers which inspire such ingenuity. I am a little jealous of the clean tying bench. Makes my tying bench look like a war zone.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bernie wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

It's "vise"--not "vice."

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Thanks for the correction...tying flies is my vice. I look for good substantive feedback on these posts trying to stir up a discussion, but seldom get much counter info. Guess I have to accept grammatical errors. But thanks for at least responding Bernie.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from timromano wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

sayfu,

I think Bernie was letting me know I spelled it wrong. Oops... It's been corrected.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

Tim...I flipped back to my post, and I spelled it wrong as well.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from masterofmeander wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

I approve of adult beverages and consider bourbon a necessary vise accessory (hey, you may spell that either way). But since we're talking DIY, let me note that leaving the top off your head cement--or, for heavy duty folks--a bottle of Softex or similar Goop, will certainly do the job in an enclosed space. Carcinogenic, you bet, and bury those brain cells in a mass grave...but man, you'll find yourself tying in colors nobody's seen since 1977.

Last time I tried this, by accident obviously, I came to after tying up two pink Buicks, the Dodge truck I drove as a boy, an series of elephants, and some kind of steelhead fly right out of a Victoria's Secret catalog.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Joshua Rust wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

This is a really good idea for production tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Joshua Rust wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

This is a really good idea for production tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from sobemanhoss wrote 3 years 2 weeks ago

This is an awesome idea. It makes me think I might be able to try to learn fly tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from db270 wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

It's projects like this that smash the "snotty" fly fisherman image and get me excited to try fly tying!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

With an invention like that, I'm surprised to see not a single adult beverage in the pic with it. It's very nice.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Brilliant is right! Ingenuity - can't wait to what he does to make it rotate.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from masterofmeander wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

I approve of adult beverages and consider bourbon a necessary vise accessory (hey, you may spell that either way). But since we're talking DIY, let me note that leaving the top off your head cement--or, for heavy duty folks--a bottle of Softex or similar Goop, will certainly do the job in an enclosed space. Carcinogenic, you bet, and bury those brain cells in a mass grave...but man, you'll find yourself tying in colors nobody's seen since 1977.

Last time I tried this, by accident obviously, I came to after tying up two pink Buicks, the Dodge truck I drove as a boy, an series of elephants, and some kind of steelhead fly right out of a Victoria's Secret catalog.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from ckRich wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Hahahahaha BRILLIANT!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

I am impressed. Very nice.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jamesti wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

very cool. now move the leg down to one side and add some dowels or pegs for thread and holders for your tools. or keep the vise in the middle and put thread on one side and tools on the other side. lots of possibilities here. thanks for sharing.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

dh270 You really see it that way? Fly guys are very thought provoking anglers. I see it as fly guy creativity..nothing to do with "snotty' IMO.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Koldcut,

Yes, tying and drinking are closly related. Normally it's a few beers which inspire such ingenuity. I am a little jealous of the clean tying bench. Makes my tying bench look like a war zone.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bernie wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

It's "vise"--not "vice."

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Thanks for the correction...tying flies is my vice. I look for good substantive feedback on these posts trying to stir up a discussion, but seldom get much counter info. Guess I have to accept grammatical errors. But thanks for at least responding Bernie.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from timromano wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

sayfu,

I think Bernie was letting me know I spelled it wrong. Oops... It's been corrected.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

Tim...I flipped back to my post, and I spelled it wrong as well.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Joshua Rust wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

This is a really good idea for production tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Joshua Rust wrote 3 years 3 weeks ago

This is a really good idea for production tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from sobemanhoss wrote 3 years 2 weeks ago

This is an awesome idea. It makes me think I might be able to try to learn fly tying.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Sayfu wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Creative dude, BUT,,the reel test of a vice if the guy is serious about tying, and it isn't just a quirk, is the quality of the steel. Poor jaws, and the temper of the steel, will result in shiny steel jaws in a short time, and the hook won't hold very well.

-4 Good Comment? | | Report

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